This country’s Soca Warriors were held to a dull 0-0 by visiting Nicaragua in their final friendly encounter before kicking off its 2018 Concacaf Semifinal Round World Cup Group C qualifying campaign away to Guatemala on November 13, before returning home for clash with USA on November 17.
Coming off a hard fought, 2-1 away win over Panama on Thursday, coach Stephen Hart was hoping his 55th world ranked Soca Warriors stamp their authority on the Central Americans, ranked 95th, and early it looked that way as T&T pressed for a quick opener.
As early as the third minute, the Nicaraguans came under pressure with Keron Cummings left sided centre, first falling to Khaleem Hyland and then Trevin Caesar, inside the 18-yard box.
However, on each occasion, the T&T players failed to connect cleanly, letting the Central Americans off the hook, with the ball eventually being scrambled away for a corner.
Three minutes later, Joevin Jones had another effort on goal for T&T, this time from a 25-yard free-kick, but his shot just missed the first post with Collado, scrambling to get across in time.
In the 17th minute, Panama captain Juan Perez had his team’s first attempt, chesting down a ball between Daneil Cyrus and Yohance Marshall, before volleying overbar.
Three minutes later, captain Jones raced into the box behind a Cummings through pass, but Nicaraguan defender Manuel Arreola was alert to the play and cut out the pass as both players fell to the turf, and despite appeals from the T&T striker for a penalty, none came from Tobago referee Keon Yorke.
As time went on, Nicaragua grew into the match with Elvis Figueroa curling a right footed attempt just wide of a desperate dive from T&T goalkeeper Jan-Michael Williams.
Eight minutes into the second-half Cummings whipped in a corner but it just missed the towering figure of Sheldon Bateau with the Central American defence all at sea.
T&T enjoyed the better start to the second-half and in the 59th minute Caesar squared to Cummings, but the effort was slammed into the body of his captain.
Three minutes later, Cummings had time and space to go forward but shot low and hard, only for Collado to save.
Debutant Aikim Andrews had a late effort on goal for T&T, but it was deflected wide of the target.
With the seconds running down, Joevin Jones and Andrews then had surging runs which brought the dormant crowd to life, but their final deliveries were not on target.
Andrews had one last twist deep into time added on, but his final shot was high and wide of the target to the dismay of his team-mates and the crowd.
T&T: 21. Jan-Michael Williams (GK), 2. Aubrey David (Mikeil Williams 68th), 3. Joevin Jones, 4. Sheldon Bateau, 8 Khaleem Hyland, 9. Kenwyne Jones (captain) Jonathan Glen 73rd), 11. Trevin Caesar (Aikim Andrews 78th), 18. Yohance Marshall (Radanfah Abu Bakr 57th), 19. Kevan George, 20. Keron Cummings (Andre Boucaud 67th), 23. Daneil Cyrus
Subs not used: 1. Marvin Phillip (GK), 10. Willis Plaza, 15. Neveal Hackshaw.
Coach: Stephen Hart
Nicaragua: 1. Justo Collado (GK), 2. Joseue Potosme, 3. Manuel Arreola (captain), 4. Oscar Pineda, 5. Luis Ramirez, 6. Luis Murillo (20. Axel Cabrera 81st), 7.Carlos Rodriguez, (15.Carlos Callejas 90th) 8. Marlon Moreno (Jason Martinez 86th), 9. Raul Avila (Eulises Alvarado 77th), 10. Elvis Figueroa (Brian Sirias 68th), 11. Juan Perez (captain)
Subs not used: 19. Jessie Hodgson, 17. Erick Lazo, 16. Daniel Avellan, 12. Diedrich Cuevas
Coach: Henry Duarte Molina